Doing Without Adam and Eve: Sociobiology and Original Sin

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Overview

In this provocative new addition to the acclaimed series, Patricia Williams assays the doctrine of original sin with a scientific lens and, based on sociobiology, offers an alternative Christian account of human nature's foibles and future.

Focusing on the Genesis 2 and 3 account, Williams shows how its "historical" interpretation in early Christianity not only misread the text but derived an idea of being human profoundly at odds with experience and contemporary science. After gauging Christianity's several competing notions of human nature—Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox—against contemporary biology, Williams turns to sociobiological accounts of the evolution of human dispositions toward reciprocity and limited cooperation as a source of human good and evil. From this vantage point, she offers new interpretations of evil, sin, and the Christian doctrine of atonement.

Williams's work, frank in its assessment of traditional misunderstandings, challenges theologians and all Christians to reassess the roots and branches of this linchpin doctrine.

Author Biography:
Patricia A. Williams taught philosophy at Virginia State University, has authored many scholarly articles on the philosophy of biology, and is co-editor of Evolution and Human Values (1995).

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780800632854
  • Publisher: Augsburg Fortress, Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/28/2001
  • Series: Theology and the Sciences Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 248
  • Sales rank: 1,081,391
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 8.95 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
Pt. 1 The Demise of Adam and Eve
1 Science, Scripture, and Doctrine 1
2 Tests of Truth 14
3 The Fall 31
4 Original Sin 48
5 The Demise of Adam and Eve 63
6 Scripture and Truth 82
Pt. 2 The Unification of Science and Christianity
7 The Theory of Evolution 103
8 The Sociobiological Consilience 124
9 Original Sin and Sociobiology 142
10 The Problem of Evil 159
11 The Atonement 180
Conclusion 199
Glossary 203
References 209
Index 220
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